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Material Possessions are Outweighing All Living Things on Earth

Posted on: December 17th, 2020


If you had any doubts about humanities insatiable appetite for material possessions, we offer the following evidence.

According to a new report, by the end of this year (2020) the combined weight of all human-made objects will exceed all living things on Earth. What’s even more alarming is that for every person on the planet, more than their individual body weight (in objects) are being manufactured each and every week.

The report was conducted at the Weizmann Institute of Sciences in Rehovot, Israel in order to illustrate how humans, and their behaviors towards material possessions, are transforming the planet we all call home.

“The significance is symbolic in the sense that it tells us something about the major role that humanity now plays in shaping the world and the state of the Earth around us,” says Ron Milo who led the overall research.

By calculating the combined mass of all human-made objects starting from 1900 up until present day 2020, it was then compared with the weight of all living things on Earth, which is known as biomass. Data sets on the flow of materials from around the globe were gathered for the calculations.

Researchers believe we’re entering into a geological age known as Anthropocene – where humanity’s impact on the environment will be seen in sediments and rocks millions of years into the future.

At the start of the 20th century, human-made items accounted for 3% biomass. But researchers discovered the rate has doubled every 20 years for the past 100 years due to our increasing appetite for material possessions and overall convenience.

This is why producing and purchasing more sustainable products and packaging is critical today. By doing so, we reduce the amount of waste heading to overcrowded landfills, while manufacturing products and packaging which have little to no adverse effects on the environment.

Milo concludes, this “is a reason for all of us to ponder our role, how much consumption we do and how can we try to get a better balance between the living world and humanity.”


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